Among the benefits of my middle age is the confidence of experience knitting since early childhood. This enables me to knit as I walk about my business in town. Depending on the project in hand, I am also able to knit and read. Thus, I have plenty of opportunity for tikkunknitting as I gather news – whether sitting by the radio, at the computer, or hard copy periodicals. Knitted cables have occupied me lately; they vigorously stake their claim on mittens, create undulating waves in a scarf, and gently wind their way around baby socks (more images here).
Unable to shake this current passion for cables, I’ve indulged myself completely, and learned that cables can also engage my ongoing interest in peace in the mid-east. How can a knitted cable possibly function symbolically, ethically or politically?
Well, I’ve managed to work cables into some TikkunTree project leaves – here, the two shades of a single color and intertwined stitches express well the necessity for sympathy between and progress towards co-existence between Israel’s Jews and Palestinians. Not terribly subtle, I know, but making these has stimulated both artistic creativity (I have visions of other “Siamese” knitted leaves employing twined or brioche techniques), and feels something like knitting prayers — working on each leaf is an opportunity to reflect on a variety of ways I can (and ought to) contribute to the peace process: through art, through conversation, through financial contributions, through political activism, through prayer.
For more information about the TikkunTree project, leaf patterns and a bit more discussion of the “politics” of these knitted leaves, try here.